Rico RodriguezThe main protagonist of the four games, Rico is a CIA spy (or more accurately, "the Agency", the Central Intelligence Agency's covert arm) specializing in sabotaging, demolition and toppling dictatorships around the world.
- Action Hero: To insane levels. John Matrix's jaw would fall out of his head if he saw some of the things Rico can do.
- Animal Motifs: Scorpions in the first two games. Eagles in the third one.
- Anti-Hero: His end goals are noble, but his methods are considered Necessary Evil.
- Comic-Book Fantasy Casting: He looks like Antonio Banderas in the first game, and Al Pacino in the second one.
- Dashing Hispanic: A crazy awesome example complete with suave accent and one-liners. According to Word of God, while he spent his childhood in Medici (a Mediterranean country with Latin influences), he was technically born in Mexico.
- Destructive Savior: In order to diminish the local dictator's influence in the region, Rico is required to cause as much chaos as possible by destroying government property (including vehicles, oil fields and water supplies). The briefings even say that "Collateral damage is regrettable, but sanctioned".
- Heroic Comedic Sociopath: Rico is technically a good guy, but has no problem committing an army's worth of felonies to complete his missions. And they're more often than not hilarious.
- Hero Insurance: Either the agency has some DEEP pockets, or several countries bankrupt their economies rebuilding after Rico is finished with them.
- Hired Guns: In the second game, he masquerades as a gun-for-hire offering his service to any of the three main resistance factions against Panay.
- Hypercompetent Sidekick: For Mario and Rosa in the third game. While they are nominally the rebel leaders, Rico does practically all the heavy lifting and turns the tide of the war on their favor.
- Inexplicably Awesome: In the Just Cause universe, there's an unwritten rule that states the following: Rico Rodriguez must ignore such trivialities as "physics" in favour of "coolness."
- Not in This for Your Revolution:
- Played straight in the second game where he doesn't really care about the three faction groups resisting Panay's regime and only uses them as means to an end in order to help oust him.
- Averted in the third game, where he embraces the rebellion in his home country Medici. It helps they are more heroic than the Panauan rebels and their leader is Rico's childhood friend.
- One-Man Army: This describes Rico to a T. He's so badass the army has to call for air support just to deal with him. Then he steals the incoming chopper and mows the survivors down with it.
- Only a Flesh Wound: Someone on the development team decided that Regenerating Health just wasn't enough. They then gave Rico roughly 20 times the health of his enemies, resulting in him being able to walk off things such as 100-foot falls, explosions roughly 4 inches away, and getting flattened by passing vehicles.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: Among the Panauans, he is referred to as "Scorpio" since they don't know his true identity as a CIA agent.
- You Don't Look Like You: His appearance changes with each game. The third game gives him a definitive appearance.
Tom SheldonRico's handler and Mission Control throughout the series. A hot-blooded Texan and all-around proud American agent.
- Eagleland: Displays some mixed elements of the stereotype with the negative ones being more pronounced (like being disappointed that Rico saved Russia from being nuked, or installing Di Ravello into power.)
- Everything Is Big in Texas: You can tell he is Texan from his accent and tendency to make barbecues.
- Hawaiian-Shirted Tourist: Wears a blue Hawaiian shirt all of his three appearances.
- Fake Defector: In the second game, he seemingly goes rogue in Panau and Rico is sent there to find and kill him. Turns out he went undercover in an attempt to investigate President Panay.
Pandak "Baby" PanayThe oppressive and brutal dictator of Panau and the main antagonist of the second game.
- Big Bad: For the second game, since his tyrannical regime caught the attention of Tom Sheldon and kickstarted the whole plot.
- Casanova Wannabe: Not immediately obvious, but according to a colonel's briefing, he tries to impress girls by pretending to speak German and Dutch using DVD movies. Also a Roaches mission states that he is a frequent visitor of the Mile High Club.
- Evil Overlord: While styling himself as "President", he didn't came to power democratically but by usurping his father and begins his regime by stripping the civil rights of his citizens and subjecting anyone that protests his government to torture and death.
- Fashion-Victim Villain: Wears an eye-searing yellow suit.
- Fluffy the Terrible: He is nicknamed "Baby" and his true name means "short", but he is a brutal and sociopathic dictator.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: He went from a very "unremarkable" man to a brutal dictator.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: He launches the nukes as a show of intimidation to Rico, but gets snagged in one. It's also the one he gets blown up in.
- Macross Missile Massacre: In the first part of his boss fight, he has a rocket launcher that can shoot off five of these in rapid succession per clip.
- The Napoleon: Has a very short stature.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: Panay borrows elements from several different dictators, specially Kim Jong Il from North Korea and Baby Doc from Haiti.
- Occidental Otaku: Or rather Oriental Otaku. He hires Ninjas, his personal fortress has a heavy Japanese influence, and one of his taunts is "bagero", a bastardisation of the Japanese words "馬鹿野郎" (baka yarou).
- Parrot Pet Position: He has a chameleon on his right shoulder.
- Punny Name: Pandak means "short" in Tagalog.
- Psychopathic Manchild: He's basically a Spoiled Brat in a grown man's body who happens to be dictator of a country.
Bolo SantosiThe communist leader of the Reapers.
- AcCENT upon the Wrong SylLABle: All Panauans are guilty of this, but Santosi is the worst offender."I am da le-DAIR of da rev-ohl-oo-shun-ary ah-MEE known as da re-PAAHS."
- Dirty Communists: Though she tries to present herself as a chummy variant, she is just as power-hungry as Panay and the other faction leaders. Blaine describes the Reapers as "all about the land and the people, as long it's their land and their people".
Sri IrawanThe nationalist leader of the Ular Boys.
- Majored in Western Hypocrisy: Though he is native from Panau, its said he graduated from Princeton University in the USA.
- Occupiers Out of Our Country: He believes Panau belongs to the Ulars, since they were the oldest ethnic group that claimed the land as their home long before any explorers came. His ultimate goal is to evict anyone that isn't a Ular out of Panau.
Ranzak "Razor" RazmanThe criminal leader of the Roaches.
- Bald of Evil: Has receding airline and is a brutal crimelord.
- Blue Is Heroic: Averted. Him and his army wears blue, but they are considered the worst of all the three factions.
- Cool Shades: Wears orange-tinged glasses that he never takes it off.
- The Don: Since he leads the Roaches, the most feared crime syndicate in Panau.
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: His nickname Razor is derived from the rumor he slices the necks of his victims for fun to bathe in their blood.
Sebastiano Di RavelloThe Generalissimo of Medici and main antagonist of the third game.
- Bad Boss: In his introductory scene, he orders one of his officials to commit suicide as punishment for the loss of Vis Electra, and later beats one of his soldiers to death when Rico drops a Bavarium bomb into the sea.
- Big Bad: For the third game.
- Broken Win/Loss Streak: In a sense. Flavor text for one of the towns details that he had an impressive twenty three year winning streak at Medicis annual fishing derby. The streak is only broken by his death.
- The Chessmaster: The Di Ravelo Diaries show that all of his rise to the top from day 1 as a private in the Medici Army had been planned from the start.
- Driven to Suicide: If allowed to finish his speech after being defeated, Di Ravello will throw himself into the flaming wreckage of his helicopter out of despair.
- Establishing Character Moment: In his first scene, he punishes an officer for the loss of Vis Electra by forcing him to commit suicide, all while making a speech without flinching at his death and then ordering a village to be burned to the ground as retaliation.
- Evil Chancellor: He was this to President Dante once he got into his inner circle.
- Evil Sounds Deep: The man has a deep voice to match his utter sleeziness.
- Man in White: Di Ravello wears a gleaming white uniform with elaborate Bling of War on it.
- Man of Wealth and Taste: Besides having fine food brought to him in his first scene, it's also shown in one mission that he has a nose for good wine and keeps it in wood barrels.
- Take Over the World: The ambition of General Di Ravello is nothing less than complete global domination. And between Bavarium-derived technologies, massive military bases, and infinite amounts of combat helicopters, he may well have the military power to back it up.
- Villainous Breakdown:
- After Rico drops a Bavarium bomb he was trying to take off the island into the sea, he becomes so angry that he beats one of his soldiers to death.
- After being finally defeated, he goes on a rant where he laments his failure. He's so broken at this point that if Rico doesn't finish him off he'll do the deed himself.
Dimah Ali Umar al-Masri
Annika SvennsonA Swedish mercenary and smuggler hired by Dimah to help in the Rebellion.
- Expy: For Maria Kane, physically resembling her and playing a similar role.
- Sexy Scandinavian: At least for Mario who has the hots for her.
Rosa ManuelaA Medici politician that tried to run for President before Di Ravello staged his coup.
- Big Good: Serves this role alongside Mario in the third game, having been the popular candidate for President before Di Ravello's reign, but having to leave when Di Ravello took over. During the third act, with Rico thoroughly destroying Di Ravello's army does she finally come home to Medici.
Leader of the island nation of Solís - in fact, his family has always ruled since the Spanish colonial times. Also employer of the Black Hand.
- And Now For Something Completely Different: The previous three Big Bads are all dictators. Espinosa looks and acts more like a CEO.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: Espinosa is also the owner of most of the corporations and industries in Solís, ranging from automotive (Prisa Automovil) to private military (Black Hand) to shipbuilding (Prospero Astillero).
- Greater-Scope Villain: He hires the Black Hand, who have been in San Esperito and Medici when the Agency intervened. He also made a deal with the Agency to kill Rico's father Miguel after the latter refused to complete Project Illapa.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: Espinosa tries to kill everyone on the mountain with the Storm Core while he flees to the US. The Army of Chaos override the controls and Rico steers the core towards Espinosa's private jet, killing him on impact.
- Man of Wealth and Taste: For an oppressive leader who is Not So Different than the three previous bad guys Rico's taken down, he does dress sharply as leader of Solís and owner of all its corporate holdings.
- Non-Action Big Bad: You don't encounter him onboard a cargo plane, he doesn't fight you in his submarine nor does he pilot a helicopter to destroy you. Espinosa flees to meet the Agency while unleashing his Storm Core to kill the Army of Chaos. Then Rico steers the core towards Espinosa's jet.
The Commander of the Black Hand in Solis.
- Clashing Cousins: She and Mira are on opposite sides of the war in the game.
- Dark-Skinned Blonde
- The Dragon: She serves as Espinosa's dragon.
- HeelFace Turn: Realising that Espinosa doesn't care whether the Black Hand survives the storm, Gabriela helps her cousin by disabling the firewall, allowing Mira to hack into the Storm Core.
- A Mother to Her Men: As much a ruthless mercenary leader she is, she does genuinely care about her troops, laying to rest a Black Hand who's dying of gunshot and helping her enemies get back at Espinosa when he tries to kill them all.
An associate of Rico and leader of the Solís resistance group Army of Chaos. She is also Gabriela's cousin.
- Clashing Cousins: She and Gabriela are on opposite sides of the war.
- The Leader: She becomes the leader of the Army of Chaos after a confrontation with Gabriela and the Black Hand finally pushes the country to the breaking point of civil war.
Mira's uncle AKA Gabriela's father.
Sergeant of the Army of Chaos.
- Exactly What It Says on the Tin: His nickname, Sargento, is of course Spanish for "sergeant".
- The Lancer: He becomes Rico's in this game.
- The Cracker: She handles all the hacking against the Black Hand after Rico gets access inside whatever needs to be hacked.
Former flight engineer and current Conspiracy Theorist.
- Character Development: Sometimes snaps out of his conspiracy phase after he helps Rico destroy the Tornado Core. By the end of the story he still believes in some of the myths, but will call out others when they tease him about it.
- Cloudcuckoolander: A given since he is a
- Conspiracy Theorist: Suspects Oscar Espinosa is a lizard alien and mistakes the Tornado core for a Flying Saucer.
Archaeologist researching Solís' pre-colonial ruler, Otorongo.